Exodus: Idols and Irons

Devotional

The Ultimate Assurance

By Pastor Dan Hickling

“’Now therefore, I pray, if I have found grace in Your sight, show me now Your way, that I may know You and that I may find grace in Your sight. And consider that this nation is Your people.’ And He said, ‘My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.’ Then he said to Him, ‘If Your Presence does not go with us, do not bring us up from here. For how then will it be known that Your people and I have found grace in Your sight, except You go with us? So we shall be separate, Your people and I, from all the people who are upon the face of the earth.’ So the Lord said to Moses, ‘I will also do this thing that you have spoken; for you have found grace in My sight, and I know you by name.’”—Exodus 33:13–17 (NKJV)

Here we see one of the most tender exchanges in the entire Bible. It’s between God and Moses, and it comes at a pivotal point in the Exodus account. Collectively, the nation of Israel had just messed up . . . big time! In direct opposition to all the Lord had commanded them, they began reverting to their old idolatrous ways of worshipping a different god of their own imagining. Given their overt rebellion, this could very well have been the end for the Israelites.

But it wasn’t. Moses intercedes on their behalf and the Lord responds with mercy and renews His promise to lead them to the land He had prepared for them. The mission is still on! However, before moving forward Moses asks God to do something for him, which is a bit out of the norm because the Lord usually gives directions, not answers requests. Moses asks God, “Show me now Your way, that I may know You and that I may find grace in Your sight” (Exodus 33:13 NKJV).

In other words, Moses is seeking assurance in who God is and in what He’s about to allow and accomplish. Hold this thought, because all of us reach those moments when we desire assurance in life. We seek security in an uncertain world because we know that so many things can go wrong. More than likely, there’s something you’re dealing with at this very moment that has you wondering, “How is all this going to play out? Where’s my anchor of assurance in this storm of uncertainty?”

Notice God’s response to Moses’ prayer for assurance about what lies ahead. God doesn’t promise to give Moses every single detail in advance of what will unfold. Instead, He gives him an even greater promise, the promise of His Presence, which will be present through every twist, turn, and trial along the way to the Promised Land. In doing so, the Lord gives the greatest assurance in the entire universe—the assurance that no matter what, the God over all things is right there with him in all that he will go through.

Keep this in mind as you consider whatever assurance you might be seeking. God’s presence is the ultimate source of assurance because it provides us with whatever we need, when we need it. Need peace? It’s found in the Lord’s presence. Need joy? God’s presence is where fullness of joy is found. Need wisdom, courage, compassion? Whatever we need can and will flow into our lives from the Lord’s presence.

It’s easy to forget this. In fact, it’s a natural part of our fallen nature to stray from resting in the sufficiency of God’s presence. We think assurance will come from more money, a pat on the back from the boss, the word of another human being, etc. None of that compares to what the Lord’s presence provides. When we have Him, we have all we could possibly need. And if there’s one thing He wants us to be assured in, it’s that He's with us in this life and there to embrace us in the next!

“I am with you always . . .”—Matthew 28:20 (NKJV)

Pause: How did God respond to Moses’ prayer and why?

Practice: Consider how you might be seeking assurance in the wrong places. What’s the right place to seek and find it?

Pray: Lord, help me to enter into the awesome truth that You truly are all I need. When I have You, I have all I could ever need. Amen!